Going South: Conversations with Pachamama


In the eve of the Fall equinox, I’m posting this text I wrote in early April, as an alternative to the benign version of the Earth Mother archetype that is usually celebrated in this harvest season. It was written as pat of the “Conversations with the Goddess” series, right before I went back “home” to Buenos Aires, three years after my last visit. I knew it was a time of transformation, in the eve of my 60th birthday, and the fears that took over me dove me deep into another dark night of the soul. Earth Mother is more Coatlicue (kualyque, I miss you so much, Ruben Mendoza!) than Tonantzin. I’ve been talking to so many women who are plunged into the underworld now, into the cave. I honor them for their courage. This post is for them. Endure!

“Vuelvo al sur, como se vuelve siempre al amor…”

Mama, Pachamama,

piecitos de tierra blanda,

agüita de manantial,

en tu amplio regazo

me entrego a soñar…

I know of your millenary wisdom, your patience. Let me find solace in your womb, in that fertile ground from where everything grows…

Mama, Pachamama, I return now to you, to my origins, sixty years later… I’m a grandmother unnamed-3now, an abuelita, closer to your/my essence.

How do I close the cycle that started twenty seven years ago—que veintisiete años no es nada…–, when I left the earthy security of motherland and family, in search for widened horizons en el Norte, babies in tow, to start a new life on the other end of the continent?

What face do I present now to family and friends who stayed back home, some saddened, others confused, most excited by the fruits I would bring back as trophies of a fullfilled life? Ritorna trionfatora…

Volveré y sere millones… curandera y ñusta, maíz y yerba mate, asaditos y achuras

As an elder now, I share with you my concerns… Why am I so scared of my own magic powers? How can I accept myself, approve of myself? Of being grateful for everything I have achieved?

It’s wake up call time and I’m scared to death to face my demons and insecurities about my sustainability. I could have continued writing, but I needed to detour and face what was really a priority right now. It has pushed me to face my demons. And here I am, scared to death, ungrounded with so much traveling.

It’s time to focus my spinning inward.

Mama, Pachamama, piecitos de tierra blanda, agüita de manantial.

Here I am, at the end of my journey, of my Camino that inadvertently brought me home, a los orígenes., my destination. Time to integrate and face so many fears I walked away from 27 years ago. Time to saldar cuentas con mi pasado, with that scared young woman who arrogantly turned her back and rejected the privilege she was born into. How dare I? Time to suturar las heridas, that open wound that has been draining every drop of energy since, that deep hole that I’ve never been able to fill up, no matter how much food I ingested, how many sexual experiences I had, how many degrees I collected.

Time to face the simple, naked truth that I’m facing right now. THIS is where my journey has led me to, THIS is el fondo del fondo (“y si ne el fondo, no hay fondo?” como diría Mario Morales).

Mama, Pachamama, piecitos de tierra blanda, agüita de manantial.

I come to you naked, surrounded by those familiar sounds from childhood, those shady streets of my youth, where my steps wove the unseen texture of my life, la trama oculta.

This is grounding time, this is what you’re asking of me now: “your travels have brought you here, to the deep abyss of your soul, to face her in her full fierceness.” It’s time to become still and face the darkness.

Mama, Pachamama, agüita de manantial.

My feet are also made of mud, like you, I’m crumbling in this dark energy of the Mother, that terrible Mother that pulls me into her core, I’m finally facing within and without.

Mama, Pachamama, piecitos de tierra blanda… Just take me to the depths of this darkness, to your womb, to my wound–” that I may be reborn again,” I was going to say, but it seems it wont be that easy now, not so fast this time.

unnamed-2Mama, Pachamama, it feels like Kali chopping off heads and the final remnants of unwanted baggage. Let me ground myself in this funk, marinate in the muck of this fear, let me face the terrible face of God in this present moment.

Y no hay estatuas de sal del otro lado, because I am made of salt, I’m the one who’s paralyzed like a statue, immobilized by fear. Entering the serpent, coiling deep within that golden bowl of my pelvis bone, contracting until it’s the size of a gold nugget, accumulating energy, gathering whatever toxins and loose ends there were in my second chakra. Imploding in a black hole to nowhere.

Mama, Pachamama, I know my plea is long, and that I’m not even allowing you to respond. I see you hierática as Coatlicue, skulls hanging from your skirt like the ruthless Kali. I surrender to your warm womb, my dark wound, that golden chalice where I dissolve into nothingness, this time for real, without agendas. No holy grail here, no signs of an outcome. No more liberation narratives, social or spiritual. I’m in suspension, in Nepantla again.

This time really going deep into the nothingness of the present moment, no Presence to walk with.

Mama, Pachamama, agüita de manantial, it’s time to die again.

Que se vayan! Que me dejen morir!


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